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Abstract The reader of this document is presumed to have a working knowledge of Fedora or Red Hat versions of Linux. If you are a first time user of Linux, please visit

This document provides the release notes for Fedora 21. It describes major changes offered in Heisenbug as compared to Fedora 20. For a detailed listing of all changes, refer to the Fedora Technical Notes.

1. Welcome to Fedora 21

   1.1. Welcome to Fedora
   1.2. Overview
   1.3. Hardware Overview
   1.4. Feedback

2. Fedora Pre-release editions

   2.1. About the release cycle
   2.2. Life Cycle of a Fedora release
   2.3. Testing Fedora Pre-releases
   2.4. Pre-Release Release Notes

A. Contributors

   A.1. Writers

B. Revision History


1. Welcome to Fedora 21 ⁠1.1. Welcome to Fedora You can help the Fedora Project community improve Fedora if you file bug reports and enhancement requests. Refer to Bugs And Feature Requests, on the Fedora wiki, for more information about bug and feature reporting. Thank you for your participation.

To obtain more general information about Fedora, refer to the following pages, on the Fedora wiki (

   Fedora Overview
   Fedora FAQ
   Help and Discussions
   Participate in the Fedora Project

1.1.1. Need Help?

Should you run into problems, there are a number of places from where you can get assistance. One location is

Many answers to your problem may already be there, but if you don't find the answer, you can simply post your problem. This has the advantage that anyone else with the same or similar problem can find the answer, too. As folks knowledgeable about a specific topic might not always be available, revisit the site on a regular basis until you find one or more suggestions.

You may also find assistance on the #fedora channel on the IRC net Keep in mind that the channel is populated by volunteers wanting to help. Folks knowledgeable about a specific topic might not always be available.

1.2. Overview

As always, Fedora continues to develop (Red Hat contributions) and integrate the latest free and open source software (Fedora 21 Features). The following sections provide a brief overview of major changes from the previous release of Fedora.

For more details about the features that are included in Fedora 21 refer to the individual wiki pages that detail feature goals and progress:

1.3. Hardware Overview

Fedora 21 provides software to suit a wide variety of applications. The storage, memory and processing requirements vary depending on computing hardware and usage. For example, a high traffic database server requires much more memory and storage than a business desktop, which in turn has higher requirements than a single-purpose virtual machine.

.3.1. Minimum System Configuration The figures below are a suggested minimum for the default installation. Your requirements may differ, and most applications will benefit from more than the minimum resources. 1GHz or faster processor 1GB System Memory 10GB unallocated drive space

Low memory installations

For some applications, Fedora 21 can be installed and used on systems with limited resources. Text, vnc, or kickstart installations are advised over graphical installation for systems with very low memory.

As larger package sets require more memory during installation, users with systems fewer than 768MB of system memory may have better results performing a minimal install and adding to to the system after the reboot.

For best results with systems having less than 1GB of memory, use the DVD installation image.

1.3.2. Display resolution

Graphical installation of Fedora 21 requires a minimum screen resolution of 800x600. Owners of devices with lower resolution, such as some netbooks, should use text or VNC installation. (VNC=Network)

Once installed, Fedora will support these lower resolution devices. The minimum resolution requirement applies only to graphical installation.

1.3.3. Graphics Hardware ⁠ Minimum Hardware for Accelerated Desktops Fedora 21 supports most display adapters. Modern, feature-rich desktop environments like GNOME3 and KDE Plasma Workspaces use video devices to provide 3D-accelerated graphic displays. Older graphics hardware may not support acceleration:

Intel prior to GMA9xx NVIDIA prior to NV30 (GeForce FX5xxx series) Radeon prior to R300 (Radeon 9500) CPU Accelerated Graphics

Systems with older or no graphics acceleration devices can have accelerated desktop environments using LLVMpipe technology. LLVMpipe uses the CPU to render graphics. LLVMpipe requires a processor with SSE2 extensions. The extensions supported by your processor are listed in the flags: section of /proc/cpuinfo Choosing a Desktop Environment for your hardware Fedora 21's default desktop environment is GNOME3. GNOME3 functions best with graphics cards supporting hardware acceleration. Alternative desktops are recommended for systems with older graphics hardware or those systems experiencing insufficient performance with LLVMpipe.

Desktop environments can be added to an existing installation and selected at login. To list the available desktops, use the yum grouplist command:

       yum grouplist -v hidden | grep desktop

Install the desired group:

       yum groupinstall "KDE Plasma Workspaces"

Or, use the short group name to install a graphical interface:

       yum install @mate-desktop-environment

1.4. Feedback Thank you for taking the time to provide your comments, suggestions, and bug reports to the Fedora community; this feedback helps improve the state of Fedora, Linux, and free software worldwide.

⁠1.4.1. Providing Feedback on Fedora Software To provide feedback about Fedora software or other system elements, please refer to Bugs And Feature Requests. A list of commonly reported bugs and known issues for this release is available from Common F21 bugs, on the wiki.

⁠1.4.2. Providing Feedback on Release Notes

If you feel these release notes could be improved in any way, you can provide your feedback directly to the beat writers. There are several ways to provide feedback, in order of preference:

   If you have a Fedora account, edit content directly at Docs-Beats page on the wiki.
   Fill out a bug request using - This link is ONLY for feedback concerning the release notes themselves. Refer to the admonition above for details.
   E-mail the Release-Note mailing list at 

⁠2. Fedora Pre-release editions

The Fedora Project provides pre-release images for testing. Thank you for helping to test the next release! Your testing efforts improve the general availability release of Fedora for everyone. ⁠2.1. About the release cycle Until Fedora 20, generally, Fedora followed a release cycle that produced two major releases each year. Beginning with Fedora 20, releases will follow a release schedule having a life cycle as described below. A release receives support in the form of maintenance and security updates until the next version of Fedora is released. A Fedora release will continue to receive updates until one month after the second following release.

One month after Fedora 21 will mark the end of life for Fedora 19. Fedora 21 and Fedora 20 will be actively maintained until the release of Fedora 22, when Fedora 20 will reach the end of its release cycle.

Rather than following a strict calendar, Fedora releases and pre-releases must meet release criteria specific to each development milestone. This practice means that the release dates may change, and ensures the quality of each release. Your testing ensures that Alpha, Beta, and general availability releases meet these criteria.

⁠2.2. Life Cycle of a Fedora release

A Fedora release transitions through the following stages during its life cycle: Rawhide Rawhide is the development branch of Fedora. It is used by testers and maintainers to: test compatibility between packages, identify and correct problems with unreleased packages, and test updates too minor or major to go into a stable release.

You should not use Fedora Rawhide unless you are actively engaged in testing and development. General availbility releases provide the latest stable version of software because of the work done by Fedora contributors in Rawhide. Installing packages from Rawhide to get a newer version is not recommended.


The Branched repository is created from Rawhide near the beginning of the release cycle. It creates the basis for what will become the next version of Fedora, and is used to create pre-releases.

About Freezes During this stage of the release cycle, the main Fedora repositories and their contents are blocked from modification (frozen) to allow predictable testing. Package maintainers may still provide updates for their packages, but these updates are held in the updates-testing repository until the general release. Only updates that resolve release critera related issues are allowed to progress during this time.

Because of this freeze, and the subsequent release of the freeze after final release, you may have a large number of package updates available immediately after an installation. This is normal and expected. For the best experience, you should update your system with any updates as they become available.

Alpha Installation images and package builds are composed and tested from the Branched repository. The Fedora QA team works first with Test Compose images, then with Release Candidate images, to refine the product. Once the appropriate criteria are met, an Alpha release is provided to the general public for testing and feedback.

Beta After dealing with issues identified with the testing of the Alpha release, as well as merging in additional release critera, a Beta release is made available to the public. In most cases, the user experience with the Beta release will closely mirror the upcoming general availability release.

GA The general availability release is made available to the public after rigorous testing and a set of more stringent release criteria are met. At this time, packages that were held in the updates-testing repository during the release freeze are moved into the general updates repository. Other groups in the project make their work available at this time; websites are switched to the new version, announcements and press releases are sent, support volunteers are engaged, and more.

Primary stable release Until the next version of Fedora goes through the previously mentioned stages to reach GA, a Fedora release receives maintenance, security updates, and minor feature updates. It is the primary product provided to Fedora users, and the most actively supported.

Maintenance release When the subsequent version of Fedora makes GA, a Fedora release transitions into maintenance status. Packages in this release will still receive updates, expecially bugfixes and security updates. Feature updates often require newer versions of packages than the Updates Policy accommodates, so the newest versions of packages are not usually available to maintenance release users.

EOL After the second general availablity release, a version of Fedora becomes 'End Of Life' (EOL) and is no longer actively supported. Maintenance release users are provided with a one month period of continued updates, during which you should update your system to either the current maintenance release or the latest stable release.

EOL releases do not receive security updates or bug fixes. Community support venues such as the Users mailing list or IRC channels do not assist with issues on EOL systems. You should update your system to a supported release before it reaches EOL.

2.3. Testing Fedora Pre-releases

Testing of Fedora Pre-releases is performed by the Fedora Quality Assurance group. If you are testing Fedora 21 Alpha or Beta and providing feedback, you are part of the QA Team!

There are several places to provide your feedback and follow along with testing efforts: Fedora Testing mailing list - Fedora QA IRC Channel - #fedora-qa on Freenode

Blocker Bug Tracking Application -

Bugzilla -

Refer to the instructions at for guidance on filing an effective bug report.

2.4. Pre-Release Release Notes The Fedora Release Notes are under active development during the pre-release stages of the release cycle. The current copy is maintained on the wiki under until the Beta release, when they are moved into a public git repository and processed for presentation and distribution.

If you are testing the Alpha release of Fedora and encounter notable changes, you can help improve the Release Notes by adding to the appropriate beat. Don't worry too much about presentation or writing ability; the Docs team will appreciate your help in identifying changes and can refine the copy further.

During the Beta release or at any time during the release cycle, you can file a bug at against the Release Notes to request an addition or correction.

In an existing bug, you can set the fedora_requires_release_note flag to ? to bring the issue to the attention of the Docs team for review.

You can mail the Fedora Docs mailing list to provide feedback on the Release Notes or any Fedora documentation. You can also provide feedback and meet with Docs team members in #fedora-docs on Freenode.

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